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If there's one thing scientists have a knack for (other than avoiding sexual contact with other human beings), it's turning seemingly innocent things into horrifying specters of terror. Atoms were just innocent old building blocks of matter up until they were used to level two Japanese cities. Apparently bored with the military weapons as an outlet for their evil, scientists are upping their pant-soiling quotient by genetically engineering monsters out of our livestock and pets. So, strap on some night-vision goggles, go buy up all the ammunitions at your nearest Wal-Mart and prepare yourself for:

5
Super-Speed Mice

Good lord, what is it?
Biologists at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland have taken ordinary field mice and, rather than bopping them over the head, opted to genetically modify them by limiting the biochemical process which allows for explosive bursts of energy. The end result of this limitation is that endurance energy becomes massively increased, thus enabling them to "run up to four miles at a speed of 20 meters a minute for five hours or more without stopping."

The mice also live longer, eat more, mate more often (and for three times as long) and when provoked, inform you in thick Russian accents that they "must break you."

They do take longer to recover than their unmodified brethren, and suffer greater muscle damage from the exertion in what one researcher called a "double-edged sword." Fellow researchers, upon hearing this, declared it to be an awesome idea and immediately set about engineering Double-Edged-Sword-Mice.

For the love of god, why are they doing this?
Well, Cleveland is boring. Also, the enzyme responsible for this behavior, PEPCK-C (apparently, the only enzyme sponsored by PepsiCo) could potentially be used to fight a bevy of debilitating afflictions such as McArdle's Disease, Cystic Fibrosis and Chronic Weak-Kneed Pansy Syndrome. Lead project researcher Prof. Hanson grudgingly admits that it is "very possible" their results could also be used to produce muscle enhancing drugs that could easily be abused for their potential to greatly enhance any and all athletic abilities. After the interview, Prof. Hanson returned to his work, watching mice run on itty-bitty treadmills, swim about in tiny mouse-pools, and wear miniscule Christmas sweaters, though he readily admits that last one is "just because."

We strongly suspect that the motivations for the experiments will be made much clearer when they try to splice a Mexican accent into the super mouse and outfit him with a tiny sombrero, finally bringing to fruition a seemingly impossible dream:

What's going to happen to us?
Though super-fast, super-enduring mice might seem to be a plague of cuddles and wuddles rather than death and destruction, we would remind you of their disease carrying tendencies. Field mice are the Tommy Lee of nature, spreading disease like tiny little Motley Crue reunion tours. Mice literally decimated Europe in the Middle Ages by carrying the bubonic plague. Now, imagine if those same mice were physically incapable of tiring, could cover five times the ground, and breed all the way up until they die- at three times the age of a normal mouse.

Even more terrifying a prospect, however, is the "very possible" potential for this modified enzyme to be used as a drug in humans. The drug would enhance every single aspect of physical performance, while increasing both life span and libido. This sounds initially like a wonder; it's all the promises of your spam mail subject lines coming to life and all you have to do is freebase a super-mouse! That is, until you listen to Prof. Hanson, himself, who admits that "On the downside, they eat twice as much as control mice, but they are half the weight and are very aggressive. Why this is the case, we are not really sure."

So, now we have a drug that triples life-span and physical ability while filling you with uncontrollable hunger, rage and lust. Maybe it's just us, but the prospect of rampaging hordes of mouse-addicted, sprinting psychopaths who love both brains and rape sits a little uneasy in that small, irrational part of our psyches that is still afraid of dying horrifying, orifice-violating, cannibalistic deaths.

4
Jellyfish-Monkeys

Good lord, what is it?
When your children ask you how the Jellyfish Apes came to be your masters, you can put on your best wizened old-man voice and tell them "it all began in the year 2000," which, in addition to being true, will also lend your tale a nice, distinct science fiction sound. Yes, it all began at the Oregon Regional Primate Research Center in November of the year 2000. Scientists modified a harmless virus with jellyfish genes and introduced it into the embryos of Rhesus monkeys, which sure beat the old-fashioned way of making a Jellyfish Monkey--furiously masturbating a jellyfish directly over a spread eagle monkey.

For the love of god, why are they doing this?
The researchers hoped to make the monkey glow. Seriously, that's it. The researchers justify continuation of these experiments with a lot of fancy talk about tracking the genetic markers and learning how to create stable, transgenic monkeys for future experiments. But, in the end we all know that, like us, they really only wanted to throw decadent and hilarious monkey raves.

The researchers, who we assume are the esteemed Professors Cheech and Chong, were operating under the somewhat controversial thesis that "if ... if monkeys like, glowed, man? That'd be fuckin' crazy!"

So far, though, all of these experiments have only resulted in one actual monkey with glowing hair and fingernails which was, sadly, stillborn. Researchers chalked this up mostly to the excess of fluorescent protein produced by the dead monkey, and only a little bit to the great and furious anger of an Old Testament God hurling ominous omens at them like the dodge balls they were also bad at avoiding in middle school.

What's going to happen to us?
To give the researchers credit, a glowing monkey would be almost twice as hilarious as a normal monkey, but unfortunately the first experiment failed and the first surviving monkey does not actually glow. Perhaps more unfortunately, he is also now part jellyfish, an animal as notorious for its gelatinous skeleton as it is for its painful, sometimes lethal stings.

Combine this with the highly intelligent nature of the typical primate, its superhuman strength and agility and complete lack of higher human emotions such as guilt, pity or regret and you've got a remorseless screeching, shit-flinging, venom-tentacled, unearthly monsters with no bones to break. Oh, and thanks to inept scientists, it won't even glow in the dark so that you might see them coming for you through the fucking trees.

Isn't there something familiar about the combination of monkeys and jellyfish? We don't mean to fear-monger, here, but the image of a primal, yet vaguely human form prone to translucence and glowing and outfitted with wet, flailing tentacles just sounds too familiar to us.

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3
Cow-People

Good lord, what is it?
Researchers in the Netherlands (Germany's Canada) seem to have no moral qualms or pesky hang-ups about human-animal hybrids, and as such have already successfully spliced together bovine and human genes. The result is a new animal comprised almost entirely of peaceful, harmless cow with just a horrifying smidge of man thrown in for good measure.

Pharming Group, the biotech lab responsible for the new animals, is currently in talks with the FDA seeking approval for agricultural use in the United States. If granted, they hope to have their products on your dinner tables and gnawing gently away at your conscience within the next few years.

For the love of god, why are they doing this?
The cows have been combined with a human gene largely responsible for the production of Lactoferrin, a protein that has been found to fight various infections. Lactoferrin is most commonly seen in human bodily fluids, such as breast milk, lung secretions, or somewhat more disconcertingly, human tears. Pharming is negotiating mostly for food usages, specifically looking toward sports drinks, snack bars, popsicles and yogurt. Finally emo kids the world over will be able to get their Venti double lattes pre-cried-into.

What's going to happen to us?
Cows aren't exactly notorious for their deadly rampages, so it's not terribly likely that humanity will be under direct, physical attack by vicious herds of Cow-People. The implications, however, are not entirely harmless. Even assuming that, upon approval, not all cattle will be converted to hybrids, the subtle knowledge that there is even a remote chance your burger was .01 percent Some Dude will be more than many can bear.

Many consumers were scared off of canned tuna in the late 1990s, laboring under the common misconception that non-dolphin-safe tuna contained trace amounts of dolphin. Odds are if you're avoiding fish on the off chance it might be part Flipper, you're going to avoid steak on the off chance it might have at one time had .01 percent of a human soul. This newfound disgust with meat could lead to a swelling in the ranks of vegetarians, or even, god help us, vegans. A sinister development which, if left unchecked, could turn entire future generations into uncontrollable pussies sobbing into their hemp pillows every time a butterfly scrapes its knee.

Luckily, there is a standing debate on banning 'human-animal hybrids' for consumption, thanks to President (and make-believe cowboy) George W. Bush. The president took a daring stand against genetic engineering in his 2006 State of the Union address. Of course, this probably had more to do with his belief that human-hybrid animals included mermaids.

2
Zombie-Pigs

Good lord, what is it?
English scientists are currently researching ways to remove the genes responsible for stress and aggression from pigs, which are highly intelligent, emotional creatures whose asses taste of bacon. The resulting passive, "zombified" animals would be more content in captivity, making them much easier to transport and slaughter.

Scientists in Cambridge also hope to use these new modified pigs for longer periods of research, with the ultimate goal of introducing human genetic material into pig embryos in an attempt to cultivate safe, healthy human compatible organs that could be used for medical studies, transplants, or just to pair well with a glass of Human-Tainted milk as a part of your soul-destroying, but somewhat more balanced, breakfast.

For the love of god, why are they doing this?
Charlott's Web wasn't lying. Pigs are actually highly sensitive animals, which is a bad match for their primary occupation on farms and factories: living in a cage and being turned into hot dogs. And, since pigs can't write angsty poetry on the back of Trapper Keepers and listen to Belle and Sebastian, the stress of confinement often results in a slew of bizarre neurological conditions, such as obsessive tail chewing, haunch-rubbing and bar-biting, all of which sound vaguely homoerotic to our adolescent minds.

The primary usage of these modified, stress-free pigs that live longer lives with fewer disorders is to allow the scientists to observe more deeply the effects of further experimentation. In other words, it makes them easier to treat horribly. For the consumer, the added bonus is a relief of all that meat eaters guilt, since the new animals presumably give knowing winks and cheerful thumbs up signs as they are lead off to slaughter.

What's going to happen to us?
The potential use of these Zombie-Pigs (a term so disturbing that it alone should either send you into uncontrollable shakes, or at least inspire you to start a metal band) as research animals for human hybrid experimentation is the point where true horror sets in. By introducing these modified pig embryos to human genetic material, the possibility of human infection by these "zombie" genes becomes very real. You get a lung transplant from a genetically lobotomized pig and perhaps next week you don't mind the price of gas so much and start to think maybe Everybody Loves Raymond deserves another shot.

This is frightening enough on its own, but these genes may pass on not only the traits of passiveness and obedience to their new hosts, but also on the many retroviruses pigs carry innately that, up until this point, could not infect humans. These viruses are called, no shit, Porcine Endogenous Retro-Viruses, or PERVS for short, as the Department of Hilarious Pig Acronyms informs us.

The PERVS, like HIV and, indeed, all retroviruses, are permanent once established. If infected, you can expect to experience severe, possibly lethal flu-like symptoms coupled with the complete and utter inability to ever get laid again as you inform potential lovers that you have PERVS, which actually gets worse once you attempt to explain that it "doesn't mean I'm a pervert, it's more like having Pig-AIDS."

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1
Spider-Goats

Good lord, what is it?
Nexia biotechnologies, a Canada-based research team and wretched hive of scum and villainy, have successfully spliced together the genes of the common goat with those of two different species of orb-weaving spiders. This has resulted in two living, healthy, male spider/goat hybrids named Webster and Peter.

Though the two male goats were the result of a long process of experimental trial and error, their genetic makeup is now stable and the scientists expect to introduce them to a female herd in the near future, where the new spider genes will carry onto the following generations naturally. Potential uses for these new hybrid goats are farming, research, or simply pairing up with a half-snake, half-lamb to form the world's most terrifying petting zoo.

For the love of god, why are they doing this?
The scientists goal is to produce spider silk, one of the strongest, most flexible substances on Earth that, up until now, has been near impossible to synthesize perfectly, and prohibitively impractical to farm on a mass scale. The "territorial nature of spiders" was cited as the primary reason for the failure of spider-farming, just barely edging out the secondary considerations that "it would also be a hell on Earth, the sight of which would follow you into your nightmares and stop the hearts of children with the sheer scale of its terror."

The researchers at Nexia have combined the glands responsible for milk production in goats with those responsible for silk production in spiders, and now hope to simply milk their goats for the precious, nigh-unbreakable fibers. To ensure nobody will question their inherent evil, the scientists accomplished this feat by turning "cells from cows' lungs and baby hamster kidneys into silk protein 'factories.'" When asked why, specifically, they had to harvest the kidneys of baby hamsters to mutate, the scientists laconically replied that "they scream much better than the big ones," before excusing themselves outside to laugh maniacally for the next 15 minutes.

What's going to happen to us?
A common stand-by for movie monsters, the giant spider has been a staple of horror since ancient times. The scientists at Nexia were apparently not satisfied with the potential of giant spiders alone, and instead decided that they need be combined with an animal notorious for its association with Satan and eating literally everything it can reach. Factor into the equation the ability to shoot enormous quantities of the world's strongest, stickiest naturally occurring fiber from their nipples, and congratulations, scientists! You've successfully tapped into a level of primal fear so intense it would leave even H.P. Lovecraft anxiety-vomiting into his hyperventilation bag.

Goats can climb treacherous mountains, survive in some of the world's harshest climates and travel in large herds. Now that scientists have introduced a spider gene that carries over through ordinary breeding, expect in the near future to be chased up the frozen side of a sheer cliff face by dog-sized goat-spiders who will suck the life-force from your prone body, after ultimately snaring you with the unbreakable projectile webs shot from their tits. In regards to that thought, and all of the subsequent time it has freed up by causing us to never have sex again, we would like to take a moment to sincerely thank these scientists for all of the newfound hobbies we can explore. This includes unexpected urination, explosive fear-diarrhea, spontaneous girl-sobbing, violent night horrors and, of course, our desperate, incomprehensible prayers.

You can find more by Robert Brockway at his own site, I Fight Robots

If you liked this article, check out 5 Scientific Reasons a Zombie Apocalypse Could Actually Happen .

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